Friday, November 12, 2010

#39. keep dress shoes properly polished

Not perfect, but at the start of this I'd never polished shoes in my life. I'm still not sure how often I'm "supposed" to do it, but some is better than none, right?

I used to think of polished shoes as one of those goofy things that I didn't care about, but I guess I'm getting to an age where I appreciate far more than even I think I should. I guess this is what else happens as you enter your thirties "in earnest."

#69. [personal]

It's worth noting that this item was to "investigate" something, rather than "do" something. But that's all that's going up here.

#21. research and donate to worthy cause

This is simultaneously harder and easier than I thought it would be. A one-time donation was easy. Someone I knew was part of a really worthy project and - bam - there's your worthy cause. But I find it really difficult to find something I believe in enough to set up a recurring donation. I find a lot of idealogically unsound things in most organizations and I think one of my defining characteristics (even if it's not one that I particularly like, objectively) is the unwillingness to associate with people with whom I disagree.

When I step back on things it often looks like I'm throwing the baby out with the bathwater, but I see donating to idealogically flawed groups some sort of approval and even encouragement to perpetuate that. Maybe I'm taking myself and my fifty dollar donation too seriously. That's probably it.

#65. "encourage" the girl to get citizenship

This is happening. Like, really happening. When I set this goal I had miscalculated the amount of time required for the process so it can't be finished yet, but she's well on her way now, and by next summer (provided the paperwork doesn't get delayed) we should be celebrating. And then we will always have an inalienable right to be together. Permanently. Awesome.

#79. organize files on laptop

Given that the laptop was crashing pretty spectacularly and regularly (Flash seems to be particularly toxic for it), it needed doing. It also reminded me that not every item can always be categorized, unless you're willing to have as many folders as files. That's almost philosophical. But it's not.

Monday, November 1, 2010

#63. fire a gun

Done and done and done. Fired three different guns, actually, almost a year ago now. A .22, a 9 mm and a rifle of some sort.

The experience was far less dramatic than I thought it would be. The .22 was a joke to handle. It felt like an air gun. The 9 mm had a short barrel and I couldn't hit anything with it. The rifle took some getting used to, but I was hitting targets 40 yards away pretty quickly.

In fact, the biggest takeaway from all of it was that its disturbingly easy to use a firearm (yes, in controlled circumstances). I'm also not at all disturbed to say that I enjoyed the experience, even though I won't go out of my way to do it again.

I don't know if it counts, but I shot a potato gun on the same trip as the other guns. It was interesting, too.

#22. avoid going into debt for any purchase under $5k

That was easy. I'm very fortunate that I don't have any debt of my own, or even shared debt elsewhere. It probably won't help my credit rating as a whole, but things are a bit easier on my mind this way.

I guess this point was my way of saying to myself, "Don't get poor over the next few years." Well, I've done that much. This doesn't make me a hero or particularly smart or savvy. It makes me lucky, that I don't have to scrounge and scrape for the basic necessities in life (which is what the $5k limit was meant to imply). I am lucky and have been lucky and hope that that continues.